Dr Roxanne Mitchell

Health officials in Tobago are reporting that registrations for the COVID-19 vaccines have regained momentum.

There was a sudden drop in people registering for the vaccine recently. According to general manager of Primary Care Services at the Tobago Regional Health Authority (TRHA) Dr Roxanne Mitchell, there were hundreds of requests for vaccination between last Friday and yesterday.

She said the vaccination process will now be extended to include Saturdays as well.

“Approximately 900 appointments have come in between Friday and Monday. We will also see coming up a number of persons will be vaccinated on Saturday, April 24th by appointments only, we will not be taking any walk-ins.”

Tobago’s vaccination programme began on April 6 with 1,500 doses.

According to Mitchell, there was public buy-in from the inception.

“In less than 24 hours after the link was sent out, we received over 500 registrants for the COVID vaccine.”

Thus far 1,457 people have been vaccinated in Tobago since the vaccination began, with 600 of those vaccines going to the elderly, 193 to healthcare workers and the largest amount, 664, going to essential workers and people with non-communicable diseases.

Mitchell said the 113 healthcare workers who were in the first group to receive vaccines in February and March, are due to receive their second doses on May 1.

She said once the TRHA maintains the current rate of a projected 150 vaccinations per day at all three vaccination sites on the island, the current batch should be completed by mid-May.

Meanwhile, the island recorded 11 new positive cases yesterday bringing the total cases to 30 —the highest number since the island broke a two-week COVID-free stint on March 18.

Mitchell did not say how the cases were distributed in terms of location but she said contact tracing is ongoing.

The last time the island recorded more than ten cases in a single day was in October 2020, during a breakout of COVID-19 at the Scarborough prison.

Prior to that instance, the next highest reading was on October 1, when 10 people also tested positive.

Since the onset of the pandemic in 2021, the island has gone for two separate two-week periods of having no active COVID-19 cases, in February and again in March 2021.